Romney's Nostalgia

A blog about business and economics.
Aug. 30 2012 11:18 PM

Romney's Nostalgia

I didn't hear much of economic policy substance in Mitt Romney's speech that wasn't in the pre-released excerpts (there was a bunch of new foreign policy material, I think), so I don't have much to add to my pre-speech preview.

But I did note something about Mitt Romney's description of his childhood. Born in 1947, he says that when he was growing up "to be an American was to assume that all things were possible" (presumably he means being a white American) and that "we went to bed knowing that we lived in the greatest country in the history of the world."

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That seems very genuine to me. He thought the America of the 1950s and 60s was a good place and a land of opportunity. Which is interesting, because looking forward his view is that avoiding a return to Clinton-era marginal income tax rates is crucial to preserving America's status as a land of freedom and opportunity. But back in those Romney salad days, those rates were up at 70 percent or even higher. Yet somehow life went on. It's worth thinking about.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.